Owensboro’s youngest-known entrepreneur recently created his own online store, craftily named BaseballKid Apparel. The online store, which launched three weeks ago, carries athletic t-shirts for both kids and adults.
Nolan Johnson, a sixth-grade student at Burns Elementary, decided to combine his passion for the sport with his love for baseball fashion to create BaseballKid. He created a business plan, obtained investors and launched a full-scale social media campaign.
“I love baseball t-shirts,” Johnson said. “It was my goal to bring the sport to life through creatively designed t-shirts.”
Johnson was a member of the Owensboro Southern Little League program that made a deep run in the post-season this past summer. The many memories he’s created playing baseball serve as inspiration for his t-shirt designs.
The online store presently boasts four designs, a number he hopes to grow in the coming months. Additionally, he hopes to add other apparel options.
“Right now we are focusing on t-shirts,” he said. “We hope to expand to other items and other sports.”
Johnson’s four designs include their signature t-shirt, which features the company logo, and their legends of the game shirt, which features the greatest players of all time at their position, as determined by Johnson, on one t-shirt. The other two shirts are a 4-6-3 double play t-shirt and a shirt that says, “goin’ yard,” for longball lovers.
When he’s not at school, playing baseball and practicing for the academic team, he spends his free time watching “Shark Tank,” a show where rookie entrepreneurs present their business idea to business tycoons with the ultimate goal of receiving an investment. Johnson cited Mark Cuban as his favorite investor on the show and said that it provided him with inspiration to create his own business.
His top investor is his grandfather, Robert Johnson of Owensboro. The two negotiated a contract and reached a conclusion on returns and re-payment. Because of his busy lifestyle, he also relies on his parents for assistance, but managing the business ultimately falls on him.
“It can get pretty busy,” he said. “Mom and Dad help me out a lot, and none of this would be possible without my Pappy.”
“We believe everyone has a baseball kid inside of them,” said Johnson. “We hope to help everyone find that kid inside of them.”